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Conference newspapers round-up: day 1

This morning’s news leads on Ed Miliband’s announcement in the Observer that he will seek to break the banks’ ‘casino’ operations away from their dealings with the likes of us. That, and his rebuttal on the Andrew Marr show of Len McCluskey’s threat to turf the “New Labour cuckoos” out of the nest.

The former is welcome, but feels very familiar, and has been a promise banded about for some time now. The latter is quite worrying – the BBC article reads: “Labour has no future if it is dominated by special interest groups like the unions, Ed Miliband has said.”

God forbid! Working people dominating the Labour party? If we accept the Tory myth that trade union influence is equivalent to big business dominance, then we are doing their work for them.

The Observer also has an interesting offering in an opinion poll on the qualities of the leaders. Good news is that Ed is now officially more trusted than Dave. But he still has some way to go in the “close your eyes” test, as Andrew Rawnsley calls it.

The Morning Star has disappointingly little coverage of conference (although it is yesterday’s), although it picks up on the fact that conference security, embarrassingly, is being handled by the disgraced G4S.

They also give a plug to the Winning Labour fringe, at 7pm on Monday, at the Manchester235 venue.

Back to the Sunday Times and that Len McCluskey interview – in identifying the “New Labour cuckoos” he made specific reference to Progress, previously branded a “party-within-a-party”, saying that the group has “a defeated and discredited philosophy”.

They too have a poll – also showing Ed is more trusted than Dave. They further pick up on a reaffirmation of a “Spirit Level” philosophy from Ed at a Q&A at a Manchester school. In a welcome answer, he drew the crucial distinction between seeing the problem as poverty – as New Labour did – rather than inequality, which Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett proved was the route of all evil.

In the Sunday Mirror, an interview with Ed focuses on his condemnation of Cameron’s mishandling of the “pleb-gate” row. The paper also takes Ed’s comments on how the PM is dividing society to the logical conclusion. He is waging CLASS WAR, screams the paper edition’s headline.

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